In the present paper, we examined the incidence of polymorphic genes involved with the detoxification of exogenous chemicals, including carcinogens, namely GSTT1 (glutathione transferase theta1), GSTM1 (glutathione transferase micro1) and NQO1 (NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1) in 60 Filipino paediatric patients with ALL (acute lymphoblastic leukaemia). We found a significantly high incidence of the GSTM1 null genotype in ALL children (71.7%) compared with 51.7% in the control group of children (P<0.05). The GSTT1 null genotype was observed in 35.0% and 33.3% of the ALL cases and the control subjects respectively, with no significant difference. Screening for NQO1 (609C>T) mutant alleles showed a high incidence of the NQO1 C/C genotype (NQO1 homozygous wild-type allele genotype) in 60.0% of ALL cases and was significantly higher than in the control group (23.3%) (P<0.01). These GSTM1 null and NQO1 wild-type genotypes are independently associated with the risk of ALL in Filipino patients. When these two genotypes, GSTM1 null and NQO1 C/C, were combined, the hazard rate for childhood leukaemia was significantly increased (P<0.001). We also noticed that the incidences of GSTM1 null mutations and the NQO1 C/C genotype were significantly higher among Filipinos. These findings suggest a possible role of the GSTM1 null and NQO1 C/C genotypes in the susceptibility of paediatric ALL cases in the Philippines.